My Concerns for Homeopathy in The U.K.
I would like to share my thoughts about the diversity of homeopathic practice, especially here in the U.K. Imagine that if we gather together any six or seven homoeopaths currently practicing in the U.K and ask them the question “How do you practice homeopathy?” I’m pretty sure we would receive six or seven completely different answers. There will be those who say they are strictly ‘Classical’, adhering closely to the teachings of Hahnemann. On the other end of the scale there will be those who practice ‘allopathically’ prescribing different remedies at the same time for different symptoms. There will be those who follow without question the teachings of present day ‘masters’ such as Vithoulkas, Herscu, Scholten, Sherr and Sankaren. There will be those who whilst saying they are classical, will have no qualms about prescribing a combination of remedies or indeed advocate the use of remedies that arise from very dubious ‘provings’. Then there will be those who use other ‘energy’ therapies at the same time as homeopathic treatment. There will be those who only use LM potencies, or those who never prescribe above a 30c or those who only prescribe high potencies on a daily basis. Then there will be those who prescribe remedies based only on the mental and emotional picture of the patient, or indeed based only on the generals or the physicals. Then again there will be those who prescribe solely on the doctrine of signatures or dreams… I could go on and on and on, the diversity within homeopathy practice is frankly quite amazing.
My question is, where do we draw the line? Or more appropriately, where do we place the parameters of homeopathy practice? At what point can we say that what we are practising is homeopathy or what we are practising is not homeopathy. At what point are we stepping away from the principles of homeopathy and moving into the realms of therapy that bears no similarity to the great healing art that was set down by Hahnemann all those years ago.
Two ball games were invented a long time ago in England. The rules of one state that handling the ball is not permissable (It’s called football) and the other states that hands must be used (Rugby). Imagine the confusion and chaos that would ensue if some footballers decided that despite the principles (sorry… rules) of football, that it would be quite okay to pick up the ball and run with it. There would be outrage and the authorities would throw them out of the football league and say “Go and play Rugby if you want to use your hands!”
I think it’s time we said the same thing in homeopathy. As teacher we firmly believe that we have a responsibility to ensure that our students clearly understand what is permissible in homeopathy and what is not. If we, the teachers, cannot agree what constitutes the right way to practice homeopathy, then where does that leave our students?
I feel the main problem we face is that either through ego or misconceptions, or even quite simply where and by whom we were originally taught, we all think that what we are doing is acceptable, but clearly it is not. Each and every teacher and practitioner needs to re-visit their roots of homeopathy, put ego aside, read the Organon and question what they are doing.
My great fear is that if we do nothing, if we don’t talk about it, and brush it under the carpet, homeopathy will be allowed to become far too diverse in practice, and will become even more open to abuse and ridicule than we are already How can we hold serious discussions with our colleagues from orthodox medicine when we are making remedies from mobile phones!
I believe we need to adhere to our fundamental principles of homeopathy – The single remedy, the minimum dose, correct provings on healthy people and the selection and administration of medicine according to the law of similar. Most importantly we need to be united in teaching these to our students.
There is nothing wrong with diversity. In fact, I embrace it in many aspects of life and indeed some aspects of homeopathy, like case analysis for example. But there can be no diversity on principles, otherwise we are just not practising homeopathy
Homeopathy is a beautiful, pure and simple system of medicine, defined by principles that are as relevent today as they were when Hahnemann first laid them down. I passionately believe we owe it to our future generations to keep it that way.